A BUS driver is vying to become the first man in Edinburgh to complete ten marathons in ten days in the UK’s ultimate endurance event.
Chris Renton will swap his regular bus routes around the Capital to do the gruelling Brathay Ten in Ten challenge around Lake Windemere in Cumbria.
Each year, only 15 runners are selected from within the UK to take part in the race for the Brathay Trust, a charity which helps young and vulnerable children who have had a difficult upbringing.
Mr Renton, 49, said it was a cause close to his heart after he suffered abuse as a teenager.
He said: “It’s a charity that helps young people who have had a really bad start to life, coming from broken homes or those affected by abuse. I can relate to that in some respects as when I was 14 or 15 in the 1970s I was abused, although not by family.
“Back in those days you didn’t get the support that you have now. I’m trying to raise money for this charity to give back something I never got, support and knowing that there’s help there.”
Super-fit Mr Renton has embarked on a tough training scheme to prepare him for the astonishing feat – which he hopes to finish on his 50th birthday in May.
He only took up running five years ago but is confident he will complete the challenge known to be one of the toughest road races in the UK.
He has twice taken part in the last day of the event, where about 1000 runners join the last marathon, and wanted to see if he could become one of the “lucky few” to complete the whole event.
Runners will meet in Cumbria in the New Year to learn about nutrition, hydration and massaging to prepare the body for the epic stress it will be placed under.
He said: “When you finish every marathon you are basically having to prepare for the next day. It’s going to be tough.
“They say the hardest part is getting to the starting line the next day. They call the final day a lap of honour but it is some lap.”
He hopes to raise £6000 and is already nearly half way there after Lindsay’s estate agents sponsored a race he has organised as a warm up in Melrose.
Sponsor him at www.justgiving.com/Chris-Renton1
The long and the short of it
THE average marathon runner can expect to burn roughly 4000 calories during the 26-mile race. But that’s not all they stand to lose . . .
Running has a unique impact on your body, with each step putting the equivalent of two or even three times your body weight on each foot.
Bizarrely, this can mean that marathon runners end a race up to 2cm shorter than they were at the beginning – meaning Chris may have more people to look up to after his epic ten-day adventure.